By Sheryl Demillo
COTABATO CITY, Dec 13 (PIA) –For “breaking new grounds” in the field of science and technology, Dr. Zenaida P. Hadji Raof Laidan, Department of Science and Technology Region 12 (DOST-12) director, was recognized as among the 11 outstanding Mindanao women achievers for 2011.
The Mindanao Commission on Women (MCW) honored the island’s top women achievers during the “2011 Kamindanawan” held at the Royal Mandaya Hotel in Davao City recently.
The recognition for Dr. Laidan is for the significant impact of her work in advancing the status of women in Mindanao through Science & Technology innovation.
“This is not just another feat for me, but more of another challenge. It’s an inspiration that would keep me do things very well,” she said.
Acknowledged to have distinct contributions in rural community development through the successful implementation of various socio-technological programs and activities in the region, Dr. Laidan steadfastly advocates halal science, making her one of the prime movers of halal industry development in the Philippines.
She founded the first and the only existing halal laboratory in the country, located in Cotabato City, and also initiated the establishment of the soon to be completed Philippine National Halal Laboratory and Halal Science Center in Koronadal City.
Dr. Laidan crafted and is currently implementing the Philippine Science and Technology Program for the Development of the Halal Industry and chairs the National Halal Forum-Philippines, the leading countrywide halal event in synch with the global trends.
Apart from her, 10 other women and a man were recognized and honored by the MCW, which is chaired by former Ms. Universe Margie Moran-Floirendo.
Other honourees are: Mindanews editor Carol Arguillas; Islamic scholar Prof. Hamid Barra; renowned Moro woman leader Hadja Bainon Karon; and peace activists Raissa Jajurie, Myla Leguro, and Obo-Manobo tribal chieftain Bo-i Era Espana.
National artist for dance Agnes Locsin; Davao-based obstetrics-gynecology specialist Dr. Regina Dela Paz-Ingente; the Kababayen-an Alang sa Teknolohiya nga Haum sa Kinaiyahan ng Kauswagan, Inc. (KATAKUS) executive director Betty More.
Major Rosa Ma. Cristina R. Manuel, the first female battalion executive officer of the 10th Civil Military Operations (CMO) Battalion of the Armed Forces of the Philippines; and Chief Inspector Grace Taculin of the Davao City Jail
The honorees were selected based on three categories: those who break the silence (speaking on issues not openly discussed), barriers (engaging in fields traditionally dominated by men), and new ground (introducing innovations and breakthroughs).
Kamindanawan is a celebratory gathering of Mindanao women leaders. It highlights the 10th anniversary of MCW.
Maria Ressa, author-in-residence of The International Center for Political Violence and Terrorism Research in Singapore, was the keynote speaker during the recognition ceremonies. (DOST-12/DEDoguiles/PIA 12)